SALISU Yusuf, Head Coach of the Super Eagles, has been caught on camera collecting cash gifts from an undercover reporter posing as a football agent.
The video clip, published by the BBC, was secretly filmed by reporters working for Anas Aremeyaw Anas, a Ghanaian investigative journalist who is popular for the beaded face-masks he always wears in public.
According to the video clip, Yusuf collected $1000 “gift” from a supposed agent who wanted him to select two specific players in the Super Eagles team for the African Nations Championship (CHAN) which held between January 13 and February 4, 2018.
The agent promised Yusuf that if the players were selected and they get foreign contracts, he (Yusuf) will be entitled to 15 percent of the contract sum.
“They will be in CHAN,” Yusuf was heard assuring the undercover reporter, after having pocketed the $1000. And true to his words, both players were selected for the tournament. Nigeria got to the final but were defeated 4-0 by hosts, Morocco.
Nigeria’s top football coach, Salisu Yusuf, has been caught on camera taking cash. The footage, exposed here for the first time, was captured by controversial Ghanaian investigative journalist @anasglobal and recently handed to #BBCAfricaEye. pic.twitter.com/O3RQTYJTJK
— BBC News Africa (@BBCAfrica) July 24, 2018
However, Yusuf, whose salary is N3 million per month, said he committed no wrong, insisting that he never solicited for money from the undercover reporter. He also said the amount in question was $750, not $1000.
Yusuf maintained that his player selection for the tournament was based entirely on the player’s form, fitness and consistency, and not because he was offered any incentive.
The BBC report stated that “there were no suggestion that the money the coach took impacted his player selection”.
“In all cases, persons bound by this Code shall not offer to or accept from anyone within or outside FIFA
cash in any amount or form,” a portion of the FIFA Code of Ethics read.
“Persons bound by this Code must refrain from any activity or behaviour that might give rise to the appearance or suspicion of improper conduct as described in the foregoing sections, or any attempt thereof.”
Anas’ series of investigative reports into the issue of bribery in African Football, titled “Betraying the Game“, have recorded a number of high profile casualties already.
They include Ghana’s Football Association President, Kwesi Nyantakyi, who resigned from office after he was caught on camera collecting bundles of dollar bills – $65,000 in total – from undercover reporters.
Also, a Kenyan referee, Adel Range Marwa, who had been shortlisted as one of the officials for the just concluded FIFA World Cup, was banned for life from all football activities, following Anas’ report. The referee was also caught on camera collecting $600 from a reporter posing as an official of a top Ghanaian football side.